Before we take a better look at the lab, let's look at some results from our teammates David Barrett, Tony Baca, and Anthony Sequera who just got back to campus after a weekend of camping and racing in Waco, TX. The three competed in Baylor University's Cameron Park Classic, a two day mountain bike event hosted by the BU Cycling Club. After mechanicals sidelined both Tony and Anthony during Sunday's races, David was able to walk away with 1st place in the men's B category. Great job David, time to upgrade for conference.
Back on campus, "time off the bike" was everyone's motto. With the road and track seasons over, most teammates have been taking time away from the bike to catch up on some much needed rest and relaxation. Base miles for next season have yet to begin, so physical testing, mental preparation, and school work have been the focus.
The winter "off" season means that it is time to hit the Cycling Performance Center on campus, where Dr. Wyatt and his graduate students can perform a multitude of tests, most importantly VO2max and Wingate analysis. Over the past week a handful of teammates have already made their way into the lab to chart their numbers. Testing often becomes a group activity with people coming to cheer as their teammates attempt to set new lab and personal records.
Teammate Cory Scott was able to set the newest lab record with his exceptional VO2 max test this past week. "93.3 ml of O2 per kg of body weight. That's what Cory was capable of using during peak exertion," said coach Charlie Zamastil. "For reference, Greg Lemond's was 92.5. Lance Armstrong was in the high 80s. Most elite endurance athletes are in the 70s."
Testing begins with the Velotron, a high tech stationary bicycle, and its accompanying software. These two products create a simulation where, after 5 minutes of warm up, the rider is forced to undergo an increased work load of 25 watts per minute. Cory was able to peak at 475 watts before complete exhaustion.
In addition to VO2, while on the Velotron, blood lactate level is also tested. Lactate threshold, another important number used in training, can then be determined. Dr. Wyatt draws a blood sample from Cory every minute during the testing.
Testing allows the rider to get the most effective and efficient training possible. Charlie can now take the data accumulated from the Velotron and VO2 machines pictured here, together with the lactate blood levels, and prepare a detailed training routine tailored to the individual cyclist. This is just one more part of what goes into making MSU one of the most elite collegiate cycling programs in the US.
Stop by DL Ligon, room 222, for more information and to say hello to Dr. Wyatt who just celebrated his birthday on October 7th.